Wednesday 10th October is World Mental Health Day 2018. Why is this important to us at #Focus5?...
According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), half of all mental illness begins by the age of 14 with most cases going undetected and untreated. This can affect young people's confidence and self esteem, preventing them from accessing education or future employment.
Regional projects such as #Focus5 and the bespoke support they can offer to young people, are therefore incredibly valuable. Adolescence and the early years of adulthood are a time of great change and excitement for many, but for others the pressures involved can increase susceptibility to mental health disorders.
Evidence is growing that promoting and protecting the health of young people also brings benefits to economies and society, with healthy young adults making greater contributions to the workforce, their families and communities and society as a whole. The WHO states that among adolescents, depression is the third leading cause of mental illness. Suicide is the second leading cause of death among 15-29 year olds. Harmful use of alcohol and illicit drugs is a major issue in many countries and eating disorders are also of concern.
The problem has become so acute that the British Government have just appointed the first ever Minister for Suicide Prevention and has announced mental health checks in schools for pupils as young as four. Hopefully this demonstrates increased importance being placed on supporting future generations with mental health intervention from an early age when it matters most.
Thanks to funding from the European Social Fund and the Big Lottery Fund, #Focus5's passionate team of Key Workers are supporting young people across the South West region to manage health problems and to function effectively in society by accessing employment or education.